Bob Henderson

Robots In Disguise @ Mean Fiddler, London

Body-popping tin foil homemade robots – and that’s just the dancers.

Daggers kicked off the show, part Duran Duran, part Jake Shears and part The Killers. Their lead singer is a toned punk hottie, but even his topless antics couldn’t keep my eyes off the brightest talent in this bunch. The Kate Bush like synth player vocally outstripped the lead singer by miles and she totally should’ve been the lead singer. Give her some lead vocals and this band could really go places, at the moment they’re just an adequate synthesis of their role models.

It’s something of an understatement to say there was a bit of anticipation for the arrival of Robots In Disguise. The front few rows were packed with young girls dressed in a set uniform of glitter, neon and bad accessories. This is hardly surprising as RID are one of the few bands left spouting a riot grrl rhetoric, but taking it to a logical Pop extreme. They played my top three Robots In Disguise songs, opening with DJ’s Got A Gun, making the crowd go mental during Turn It Up and playing one of the best alternative euro-pop songs, like, ever in La Nuit. These are the best introductory tracks you should hear to get into the band; shouty without being aggressive or unlistenable and far more immediate than their latest album We’re In The Music Biz. Even tracks from this, their weakest album, made sense live. On record, songs like We Live In Berlin come across as tinny name-dropping cringe-fests. On stage they come alive as the stompy electro monsters that they are – which brings us nicely to their backing dancers, the aforementioned Blue Peter-Bots. Part of me imagined a sweaty Noel Fielding inside, long time friend of the band, but either way they were just fun. Just another reason why you should go and see one of the few bands pushing a gender agenda by playing some kick ass Pop songs. Brilliant.

Words/Photo: Bob Henderson

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